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Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English, 98-05-19

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From: The Cyprus Mail at <http://www.cynews.com/>


Tuesday, May 19, 1998

Kyprianou thrown lifeline

SPYROS KYPRIANOU'S success in warding off calls for him to step down as leader of Diko, at the party's weekend conference, was the lead story in yesterday's newspapers.

Alithia said that, "in a move that caused surprise and disappointment" within the ranks of Diko, the party's parliamentary spokesman Tassos Papadopoulos had thrown a lifeline to Kyprianou. In his conference speech, Papadopoulos said he had no intention of challenging Kyprianou for the leadership as this would split the party.

This not only helped Kyprianou out of the tight spot he was in after the four days of the conference, during which "the overhelming majority of speakers" had called for his withdrawal from the party, but also strengthened his position. With the support of Papadopoulos, his most likely successor, Kyprianou remains the unchallenged leader, the paper said.

Simerini interpreted events in the same way. Papadopoulos' speech had made it possible for Kyprianou to abandon his plan to call for leadership elections in a fortnight's time. After the conference, it was clear that Kyprianou was in complete control.

All that remained was for the party to decide whether there will be an election conference in November, as Kyprianou had suggested, or in June, which was the proposal of leadership candidate Kypros Chrysostomides. But with the influential Papadopoulos backing Kyprianou elections would be meaningless.

Phileleftheros said that Papadopoulos had followed his "favoured tactic" of demanding that Kyprianou made his intentions clear, before a decision for holding elections was taken.

Kyprianou interpreted this in the way that suited him. He felt that Papadpoulos was not asking him to say when he planned to resign from the leadership. On the contrary, he felt that he could continue to count on Papadopoulos' support.

Haravghi said that "consensus and unity had won the day", despite efforts, both from inside and outside Diko, to lead the party to dissolution. The party had clearly chosen the path of unity and consensus.

To Tharros claimed that Russia was determined to take all necessary security precautions to ensure that the S-300 missiles would be delivered safely to Cyprus.

According to the paper, Russia had said it would provide air and sea cover for the transport of the missiles, something that has upset the US Pentagon which is opposed to a Russian military presence in the Mediterranean.

Agon reported that the political parties, represented in the House, were unwilling to approve the government's proposal for a one per cent increase in the Defence Levy. However the proposal could be discussed by the parties at a later date.

© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1998

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